‘They could go all the way’
Provided by Deana Zimmermann
Elsberry hosted the EMO Cross Country Conference Championship 5K Runs on Monday, Oct. 21 and according to Head Coach Ezra Tillotson, they are on the road to greatness.
Nine schools took the line to vie for the EMO top spots. First to run were the girls. However, with the MSHAA starter being absent, Tillotson would start the race with a shouted “Bang!” Bowling Green’s Kylie Conrow would finish first, taking the individual championship. However, Elsberry’s own Naomi Gladney would come in fourth with a time of 22:53, leading the Indians to claim the second place overall spot.
“The EMO now recognizes the top 12 spots as All-Conference,” explained Tillotson.
Following the fourth place finish by Gladney, Maggie Spratt would earn a 10th place finish. With a time of 24:26, she would also take a spot in the EMO. Anne Marie Bufford would finish 15th with a time of 25:55, while Mandy Horne came in 17th place with a time of 26:39, Allie Smith in 18th place with a time of 26:53 and Ann Heintzelman in 26th place with a time of 29:16.
After the girls 5K, Tillotson commented that each girl had improved over their previous Sun Valley Course times, in some cases dramatically.
“Most of them had improved over their 2012 times,” added Tillotson. “Curiously, the teams individual average is identical to that of 2012.”
Next up was the Boy’s 5K run, where once again Bowling Green would claim the individual honors. Elsberry would place two runners, Freshman Jack Weakly and Austin King. Weakly earned a 21st place finish with a time of 22:14, which toped his Sun Valley time. King finished 35th with a time of 26:34.
“Both these boys are running high school Cross Country for the first time,” explained Tillotson. “They’re learning how to use their bodies on different terrain and in a variety of environmental conditions. They learn fast and I am looking forward to watching their progress over the next several years.”
Elsberry will make its last run of the regular season at Bowling Green on Friday, Oct. 25. Districts, as well as the State Qualifier, will be on Nov. 2.